SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - One year after the death of Shreveport Officer Thomas LaValley in the line of duty, his memory is being honored with random acts of kindness and memorials planned for close friends and family.
According to a post on the Shreveport Police Department Facebook Page,
"Today, many citizens across our area have chosen to participate in displaying random acts of kindness toward the local law enforcement community. To those gestures, we simply say THANK YOU! We are humbled and appreciative for your thoughtful expressions and continued support."
Officer LaValley was fatally wounded in the line of duty on Aug. 5, 2015 while investigating a suspicious person call, becoming the 29th SPD officer to die in the line of duty in the department's history.
Friends are planning to gather to remember LaValley Friday at his memorial at Betty Virginia Park at 6:30 p.m.
The memorial was paid for through a t-shirt fundraiser started by two of LaValley's closest friends and dedicated in October 2015.
Since that project has been completed, funds raised from t-shirt sales will go toward helping send families of fallen officers to Washington, D.C. for Police Officers' Week in the future.
Those interested in purchasing a shirt can click here.
A family memorial service is set for Friday evening in St. Amant, where he was laid to rest.
In the year since his death, LaValley has also been remembered with legislation naming a Bossier Parish bridge in his honor. Act 22, which Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards signed May 10, 2016, designated the state Highway 154 bridge over the south end of Lake Bistineau as the "Officer Thomas LaValley Memorial Bridge."
Northwestern State University has also recognized the late Officer Thomas LaValley, a 2007 graduate of the university, with a posthumous presentation and the establishment of a scholarship in his name.
The 28-year-old Shreveport man accused of killing LaValley is tentatively is set to go on trial in February 2017 on 1 count each of first-degree murder, battery of a police officer and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. A sanity commission is expected to present their findings in September on his fitness to stand trial.